Joey Bosa has been a consistent presence on the LA Chargers defense since he was drafted in 2016. Bosa was instantly impactful in the NFL and has put together a resume that makes him one of the best edge rushers in franchise history.
Bosa will only be 28 years old next season, giving him several more years of high-level production before he eventually starts to decline with age. If Bosa can put together a few solid years, he could go down as the best edge rusher in franchise history.
All that being said, Bosa's place among his peers in the NFL has started to slide a bit. Other edge rushers have put together truly excellent seasons while Bosa was on the sideline for most of the 2022 season. When he did play in the AFC Wild Card Game, he couldn't hold his temper and was a big reason why the Chargers eventually lost the game.
All that is adding up as the league apparently doesn't view Bosa on the same level that he once was. He is still a great edge rusher but in previous years he was a consensus top-five edge rusher. This year, NFL execs and personnel rank Bosa as the 10th best edge rusher in the sport, courtesy of Jeremy Fowler's yearly positional rankings for ESPN.
""He's been really good for a long time at the art of knowing how to beat your opponent -- I just wonder if the body will start breaking down," an NFL personnel evaluator said. "He's still a relatively young guy, but he's played a lot of football."
"An NFL personnel pushes back on that a bit, calling Bosa a "game-plan type player," high on the opponents' scouting report.
"Not as disruptive as his brother [Nick Bosa] but still super talented," the director said. "
Chargers' Joey Bosa should use this as a chip on his shoulder in 2023
As much as we would like to pound the table and say that the league is wrong about Bosa's place among his peers, it is hard to make a case for him to be higher. Injuries kept him off the field in 2022 and his overall production still is less than those elite edge rushers ahead of him.
Does Bosa have the capability to be a top-five edge rusher in the sport? Absolutely. He just has to do it week in and week out and most of all, stay on the field. The 2022 season was meant to be a huge year for Bosa with the addition of Khalil Mack and instead, it was a big disappointment.
Plus, it is worth wondering if Bosa has peaked in this league. 28 is still relatively young in the NFL world but with so many miles and injuries on his body, we may not see the prime version of Bosa any longer.
It is up to Bosa to prove the league wrong and give the Chargers a top-five edge rusher season. If he does, the Bolts could be extremely dangerous in 2023.